Expressions Community is a unique program recently launched by EXPRESSIONS Gallery. This group of like-minded photographers is participating in a year-long journey to enhance their photographic lives through intention and connection. The profiles below feature each participant’s creative journey.
- Lisa Allocca: Simple is Beautiful
- Michelle Aronson: When the Ocean Calls Me Home
- Michael Bennick: Birds and Water: A Reservoir of Beauty
- Kelly Burneson: The Journey of a Wave
- Nora Donoher: UNTERMYER GARDEN: A PERSONAL VISION
- Reenie Murphy: Water and Flower Composites
- Rick O’Connor: Reflection on my History with Nauset Beach
- Emory Petrack: Beyond the Fence: Boundaries and Connection in Challenging Times
- Erica Sloan: Visionary Coastal Expressions
- Michelle Starks: Travel: Beyond the Iconic Image
Simple is Beautiful
By Lisa Allocca
The images will be shot in various towns along Cape Cod’s picturesque coastline, each offering its own unique perspective on the region’s charm. I will utilize subtle compositions to draw attention to the subject matter, while blurring the background elements to create a sense of depth and atmosphere.
Through these images, I aspire to transport viewers to coastal shores, inspiring them to seek their own moments of peace and simplicity of nature.
Personal Meaning: Five years ago, a new chapter unfolded as we relocated to Cape Cod, embarking on a path to simplify our lives, bringing more balance, freedom, and joy to our everyday activities. We rediscovered the joys of adventuring in nature, reclaiming a passion that had been dormant during the years dedicated to raising a family and nurturing a business. Simultaneously, I picked up a camera for the first time and realized the power of capturing the essence of our adventures and sharing them with others.
Instagram: @LisaAlloccaphotos Facebook: Lisa V. Allocca
When the Ocean Calls Me Home
By Michelle Aronson
Although the ocean will be at the heart of my process, each resulting image may or may not include the ocean itself, but rather elements of the coastal landscape I am called to connect with. My resulting body of work will represent the diversity of the coastal landscape from land, sea, and sky.
Personal Meaning: My very first memories are of living in Hawaii and joyful time spent exploring tidal pools at a nearby bay. During my later childhood and teenage years, my family resided on a tiny, remote island where daily life revolved around activities in our sheltered lagoon. Although I have lived my entire adulthood in Minnesota, trading freshwater lakes for the sea – it is still the salty air, sand, and waves of the ocean, that I feel the strongest connection to. I treasure opportunities to be along the coast, whether it is a place of comfortable familiarity, or a new and exciting location to explore. A note of personal significance is that my dear mom passed away two years ago. It is since that time that I have been making more meaningful imagery of the strong connection I feel with the ocean – a connection I think of as a special gift that has been passed from her soul to mine.
Birds and Water: A Reservoir of Beauty
By Michael Bennick
Personal Meaning: I have always been drawn to the power and beauty of water and have recently been profoundly captivated by the beauty and artistry of birds. There are times when they interact and the movement of waves and feathers reflect one another even more powerfully than the reflections captured within the water.
Instagram: @bennickmichael Facebook: Michael Bennick
The Journey of a Wave
By Kelly Burneson
I will be capturing specific moments that display Nature’s energy in motion.
Personal Meaning: Cape Cod is embedded in my soul. I have fond memories of spending my summers with my grandparents, cousins, and brothers in Wellfleet. Sneaking into the Wellfleet Drive-In Theater to see Jaws, hours playing on Marconi Beach, Grandpa sailing his sunfish on Gull Pond, and long walks at low tide on the flats to reach the target ship in the far distance. As an adult, my connection with the coast runs deeper both emotionally and spiritually. Having the ability to be in the water all year long with my camera in hand has a profound effect, proving clarity, reducing stress, soothing the mind, and providing a greater sense of calm in my life.
Instagram: @kburnesonphotography Website: www.kellyburneson.com Facebook: Kelly Burneson Photography
UNTERMYER GARDEN: A PERSONAL VISION
By Nora Donoher
Personal Meaning: Untermyer Garden gives the Yonkers community and the healthcare workers who work next to it a respite from urban city life with its beauty and peaceful surroundings. Untermyer served as a respite for healthcare workers during the height of COVID in Spring 2020, and remains that to today. My focus is to share photographs of this healing place that will bring the viewer to a place of beauty and calm.
Instagram: @ndonoher Facebook: Nora Donoher
Water and Flower Composites
By Reenie Murphy
Personal Meaning: Both the ocean and the garden are places that feed my spiritual soul. Interestingly, both photography and gardening are later in life hobbies that have expanded over the past decade and bring me inner peace and great joy. It is important to me that the images of both water and flowers are “in my backyard” and I don’t have to travel long distances to find them; whether I am on Cape Cod or my soon to be new home on the east coast of Florida.
Reflection on my History with Nauset Beach
By Rick O'Connor
Personal Meaning: As a young boy, I would spend hours in the surf, surrendering to the rhythm of the tide — sometimes body-surfing, more often just floating along, half in and half out of the water, observing the sea at eye level. I found myself (and do still) immersed in the energizing yet calming sounds of the surf: the crashing and rolling of the waves…their ebb and flow amid the sand and shells. This is also a place where I’ve spent endless hours with family — seeing them from the water, lying on the beach, enjoying great seafood. I have passed the love of Nauset Beach to my children. And now, as I age, I come here for its uniquely, personally restorative powers. On the beach and, especially, in the water, this place is where the sands of time are suspended, and where my worries wash away.
Instagram: @cacoma_roc Website: cacoma.org
Beyond the Fence: Boundaries and Connection
in Challenging Times
By Emory Petrack
Personal Meaning: I want to expand my creative relationship with photography beyond landscapes. While fences are generally thought of as barriers, I want to move beyond this notion and explore both sides of a fence. I want to expand the concept of a fence separating 2 areas, into one in which there can be simultaneous separation and joining. I will consider how my images can portray the need for separation and individualization while also appreciating the need for community and connection.
Instagram: @emorypetrack Website: petrackphotography.com
Coastal Expressions Reimagined
By Erica Sloan
Personal Meaning: My passion for photography stems from sharing a beautiful moment in time while holding the feelings that moment evokes. Photography has helped me immensely in processing and expressing my emotions. I want these images to do the same for viewers in both feeling and escaping. Water especially has always been a grounding, peaceful force in my life. I love the quiet power of the ocean, the changing choreography of every wave and the sense of limitless freedom water provides. I want my images to express all of these aspects to varying degrees.
Instagram: @ericajoy.photography Website: www.ericajoyphotography.com Facebook: Erica Joy Photography
Travel: Beyond the Iconic Image
By Michelle Starks
My Ambition: Over the next 12 months, I plan to create a collection of images that will express my love of travel throughout the US and the world. Each image created will attempt to let the viewer experience the beauty and wonder of the location just as I experienced it. A written statement expressing what makes each image special to me will accompany the collection.
Personal Meaning: In the early 1970s when Star Trek was the show my family watched on our one television every night, I caught the travel bug. Although my brother’s room was basically to be off limits to me, I liked playing with the globe that was on my brother’s desk in his room. I liked spinning the globe and watching the brightly colored countries whirl around before my eyes. I thought how exciting it would be to travel to a purple-colored country. However, it felt like an impossible dream. Anytime I asked my mom about travel, she discouraged it because from her perspective, just a few short years ago public transportation was segregated. And then there was the money. My father would tell me that I would need a really good job if I wanted to travel.
I am now at a point in my life where I can travel. And almost every time I get on a plane, I remember spinning that globe and how far I have come.